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Tuesday, 25 October 2011

The funny side to the Greek (food) crisis (Για γέλια)

Similarly to ancient Greek history, Greek food has regularly been used to parody the economic crisis. This shows how closely related ancient history and food are to the Greek identity. It also shows how well non-Greeks know us (or view us: after all, they are the satirists in this case). They all have some idea of our ancient past (even though they will insist that the modern Greek bears no resemblance whatsoever to their anceint counterpart), and our culinary present.

daily mail taramasalata

"Greece is putting a tax on taramasalata and tzatziki in the hope it will prevent a double dip recession."
(comment made by someone on Robert Preston's blog).

guardian taverna

Τα φάγαμε όλοι μαζί - "We all ate it together" 
PASOK MP Theodore Pangalos' (in)famous words, implying that since we all ate it together (ie we spent it together), we must all pay it back together.

houston chronicle souvlaki
From the Houston Chronicle

"... in an effort to stimulate the economy, ... plates must be smashed after each meal, even if it is just a cuppa at 11 in the morning. (steddyeddy)

Express

... Also, in helping to revive the Greek food sector, singer Demis Roussos has been instructed to eat larger meals, and feta cheese will now only be available in 5kg packets." (steddyeddy)

Greek-austerity-riots-kip-001

 Notice what the cartoonists know about Greek food: the same old tired taverna entries they probably had on their last holiday - souvlaki ('gyro' in America), plate smashing (only for tourists), feta (widely copied PDO), taramasalata, tzatziki and retsina. But Greek food involves much more than just that, even in global terms: the only economic success stories in Greece that come to my attention concern food - you can read about them in the following links:

1. Aris Kefalogiannis
2. The Douzis Brothers
3. Organic farming
4. FageUSA
5. Local food importers in the global market

... and many more, in the months to come, no doubt.

UPDATE:

And since this post is getting good stats in the cybersphere, here is what's happening right now, not just in Greece, not just in Europe, but in the WHOLE WORLD! I made the cartoon from a collage of different cartoonists' drawings, together with a Wikipedia map of Europe, and stuck them together with cellotape. In retrospect, I should have had Papandreou holding a euro note, not the Greek flag. Luxembourg is in there somewhere too; I think she slipped through the crevices in the dynamite, because of her size.


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